Cholesterol/LipidsElderlyFlavonoids (Soy)Phytoestrogens

Soy protein improves cholesterol in postmenopausal women

Using soy foods to replace foods high in animal protein that contain fat and cholesterol might help improve cholesterol levels and confer benefits to cardiovascular health in postmenopausal women.

Lipids Online has a good summary of a study just published in the journal, Menopause.

  • 216 postmenopausal women
  • Each had borderline to moderate increases in LDL (bad) cholesterol
  • Diet was modified by adding soy protein-containing isoflavones for 12 weeks or placebo

And the results

When blood samples were measured at 6 and 12 weeks, dietary soy protein led to small but significant decreases in total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol.

The researchers concluded, “The modest effects of soy protein on LDL cholesterol … may be beneficial for heart health in postmenopausal women who do not qualify for definitive pharmacotherapy.”

In other words, everybody could benefit from more soy in their diet. These results support the conclusions of an earlier review of 42 studies.

2/7/07 22:48 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.